February 14, 2016

UPDATED: Standish prison's Kansas competition for Gitmo detainees is out

Granholm opposing Gitmo transfer

Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm still opposes Guantanamo Bay detainees being housed in Michigan.

A federal penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kan., which, like the Standish Maximum Correctional Facility, was being eyed as a replacement as a detention center for Guantanamo Bay detainees, is no longer in consideration, as state officials and members of the federal government representing the state have said they aren't interested.

An e-mail from a White House spokesperson says no decision has been made on a Gitmo replacement and that discussions are continuing about Standish Max and other facilities that may serve as detention centers for suspected terrorists.

"No decisions have been made about where to locate Gitmo detainees and multiple options are being considered," the e-mail to the Independent said.

Congressman Bart Stupak's (D – Menominee) office says the decision made by Kansas officials won't play a part in how Standish Max stands up when compared with other prisons being eyed at detention centers.

"The announcement made by (Kansas) Sen. Roberts and Sen. Brownback last week has not impacted the status of Standish one way or the other as the administration works to make a decision on this issue," said an e-mail from Stupak's Press Secretary, Michelle Begnoche.

In other news concerning the prospect of Gunatanamo Bay detainees being held in Standish, Governor Jennifer Granholm is still opposing the transfer.

"The Governor’s concerns have not been addressed by the federal government so she does NOT favor relocating detainees to Michigan. We have not heard anything from the federal government on this issue," said an e-mail sent to the Independent from the Governor's Press Secretary, Elizabeth Boyd, received Sept. 17.

A press release from a coalition aimed to "Stop Gitmo North," gave a nod of approval to both Kansas and Granholm.

"We hail (the Sept. 16) announcement that the federal government is no longer considering Fort Leavenworth to house Gitmo detainees as a victory for thew people of Kansas and we urge that our elected officials demonstrate the same nonpartisan, resolute opposition to transferring Gitmo terror suspects to Michigan," the press release said. "Like wise, we applaud Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm for her steadfast opposition to the transfer of Gitmo detainees to Michigan due to security risks that have not been addressed by the Obama administration.

"Is Standish ready to welcome the firestorm of controversy and protests that will no doubt surround the relocation of these international terror suspects to US soil?" the press release continues. "Does Michigan really want to become the bull's eye of an international network of jihadists committed to multiplying their heinous acts of terror?"

Check back for updates.

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